Engaging in conversation with a lively audience after a recent GOOD Bites session on how to do death better, I could almost hear a sector silo door creaking open. Enthusiastic, energetic fundraisers happy to dump the preconceptions and armed with excellent insight and strategic ambition are no longer content to sit on the organisational side-lines.
Long relegated to a polite, beige place in the communications corner, legacy marketing is edging towards its rightful place, in the centre of things, which is where our audiences are starting to put their attitudes to death and dying.
Our GOOD Bites session unpacked how the language, signs and symbols of death we use are developing. Imagery and rituals largely unchanged since the Victorians are rapidly being superseded by personal, positive, purposeful planning of everything from funeral celebrations to the act of dying.
A major change is that death is now much less about suppressed emotions, restraint and private grief, a downward trajectory. Now we’re going upwards in death, releasing and sharing thoughts and feelings, celebrating a life lived, with all its quirks.
This isn’t just about releasing symbolic doves. For legacy fundraisers, it means being relevant to people in life, not simply advising and supporting on the process of leaving a gift in a will, but offering experiences, stories, and opportunities to engage. Those charities and causes that give people a chance to experience the joy that fulfilment of values and purposeful giving can deliver, are far more likely to be credible when asking to be remembered with a gift in a Will.
And isn’t this a win-win for legacy fundraisers, who have sometimes struggled to be ‘on brand’ as legacy giving is seen as tough to align with a positive, impact oriented brand message? And aren’t we all looking for a rationale to deliver a positive supporter experience?
Whether we’re tackling the temporal remoteness of death in legacy propositions, building integration and social norming in legacy strategy, or writing and designing legacy communications that get results, at GOOD we’re always striving to do death better. The time is now.
Whether you’re refreshing an existing legacy programme, establishing a new one or making the strategic case for investment, we’d love to talk to you about how to target and design communications that get noticed and are a natural fit with your cause and brand.